Selling Successfully (Your One-Stop Resource for Setting Up, Managing and Marketing)

Steps for Managing A Purchase Order and Other Transactions

You have sold your first item and you are excited. Now you ask yourself, "How do I manage the purchase transaction in my shop?" The answer to this question will depend on how you have defined your payment and shipping parameters in your shop. For example, what methods of payment do you accept and how does the customer contact you to get the information they need to complete the transaction by email, phone or Skype? What type of shipping do you offer, is your shop set to automatically calculate tax, shipping, handling and/or insurance, and is the shipping based on location and/or weight and dimensions? Because the payment and shipping parameters set for an item may vary from shop to shop, and also, item-to-item within a shop, how a purchase transaction is completed and subsequently marked Sold or Sale Pending will also vary.

Several different purchase scenarios are listed below to assist you in successfully completing a variety of purchase transactions in your shop.

Scenario 1: A Customer Selects the Purchase Now for $XX Button

You receive an automated email and a text message (if you have set your shop to receive text messages) from Ruby Lane when a customer submits a purchase order through your shop. The message provides details on the item purchased along with the name of the buyer, his or her address, and the customer's chosen method of payment. The item is automatically set to `Sale Pending' in your shop, which means the item is no longer available for purchase unless you have multiple quantities of the same item still available for purchase listed under the same item number.

You may also check for new Purchase Orders by accessing the Manage Transactions page in the Pending Activity section of your shop. We recommend you check this page on a regular basis. Relying on email notification is not a good idea because customers and ISP's use a variety of Spam filters that may block the transmission of an email. It is possible that your ISP may not deliver a customer's order to your email box in a timely fashion - or it may not be delivered at all.

After a Purchase Order posts to the `Manage Transactions' area in your shop, you can click the `Manage' button located next to the `Purchase Order' line to view it. You'll want to note the customer's chosen method of payment and where they live. If you have set your items to automatically calculate the amount to be charged for one or more of the following services: shipping/handling, insurance, and/or sales tax, then for each item purchased, the amount to be charged for each service will automatically be calculated, and the appropriate field will be completed, based on your inputs.

If you DO NOT USE the Automated Shipping/Handling, Insurance and/or Sales Tax Calculator, but you do charge for shipping and/or other services, you will need to determine the amount to be charged for each service including tax, if applicable, and then, manually enter the information in the purchase order in the appropriate field. If you wish to apply sales tax to the item price, and to shipping, handling and insurance, then you must mark the appropriate box as indicated (You have the option to set the percentage to be charged for sales tax, for a given state, for all items sold in your shop, by entering the required information in the Sales Tax section of your Shop Information page. Activating this feature will allow the system to automatically calculate the sales tax and apply the correct amount to the purchase order). Please note the system requires that the shipping/handling, insurance, and tax fields contain a numeric value, even if the service is free of charge to the customer. For those services for which you are not charging a fee, enter the number `0' (zero) in the appropriate field.

After you have completed all the required fields, you will click the Add/Change button to accept the entries. The system will then automatically calculate the total and the amount will post to your online copy of the purchase order and also, to the customers online purchase order receipt located in the customer's My Account section. At the same time, a new set of buttons will appear on your purchase order. The first button Send Buyer Total allows you to send the customer a copy of the purchase order with the total amount due. You will also see a Finalize button, which you will use later to finalize the order report the sale and close out the transaction. In addition, if the customer selected to make his or her payment via PayPal, a secure PayPal payment button will appear on their copy of the purchase order allowing them to proceed to checkout and make their payment, and on your copy of the Purchase Order, under `Payment Method'.

Scenario 2: Reporting an Item Sold

After you have received payment for an item, the item has shipped, and you have confirmed the customer has received the item and is satisfied with their purchase, you will want to mark the item as `Sold' in your shop. As a word of caution, if the customer paid for their purchase with a check, you will want to wait until the check has cleared your bank before sending the item to the customer and proceeding with this step. In addition, it is a good idea to wait until you are sure the customer will not be requesting to return the item before you clear the transaction, as this will result in the item being marked Sold and the purchase will immediately be added to your shop transaction history. Once added to your Yearly Summary, a transaction cannot be removed.

To clear a purchase order and have the item marked as Sold, go to the Shop Owners Home then click on Manage Transactions. Select Manage next to Purchase Orders, and scroll to the Purchase Order you wish to clear. Next, click Finalize Order.

When you click the Finalize Order button you will be presented with several options for clearing the purchase order. First, you must indicate if the item was sold via Ruby Lane or not via Ruby Lane. Then you will select whether you want the Item Removed, Marked Sold, Then Remove After "X" Days or Months, or Relist with setting Quantity. Make your selections, and then click the Update button to report the sale. You will only want to select Relist if for some reason the sale was not completed or if you offer multiple quantities of an item and you want to return the item or the remaining number of items to stock.

If there was no Purchase Order, go to Manage Items, instead, and select the item id and then click the Report a Sale button. Mark your selections on the page for the transaction and then click the Report It button to report the sale.

Scenario 3: You Receive An Offer From A Buyer

If the buyer has made an offer for the item, you will be notified via email (and text message if you have chosen to receive text messages) of the amount of the offer. To accept, reject or counter the offer, go to the Manage Transactions page and in the Pending Activity section you'll want to select Manage next to Make an Offer and scroll to the offer you wish to manage. Choose Accept Offer, Reject Offer, or you may choose to send the buyer a counter offer. If the offer the customer has made on your item is acceptable to you, and you have emailed the buyer separately, you can simply click the Mark Accepted button. This creates a Purchase order, which will be visible on the buyer's My Account pages but does not send an email to the buyer.

Once an order has been accepted it will automatically be changed to a Purchase Order. To move an offer you do not wish to accept out of this area, click to Mark Rejected.

Scenario 4: A Customer Contacts You Via Telephone With An Offer

If your customer has access to your online shop we recommend that you ask them to go there and follow the steps to Make An Offer. When they have done this, follow the steps in Scenario 3 above.

If the buyer doesn't have access to the Web, you'll need to edit the price and mark the item Sale Pending. You can do this by going to the Manage Items page and selecting the item ID number, then click Modify. You'll then scroll down on the form and change the price to the agreed-upon offer price. Then, under Show Price As, you'll change the status to Sale Pending.

Scenario 5: A Customer Contacts You Via Telephone Wanting to Purchase An Item

If your customer has access to your online shop, we recommend that you ask them to go there and follow the steps to place a Purchase Order for the item through your shop. If the buyer doesn't have access to the Web, or would prefer not to place a purchase order through the shop, you'll need to place 'Sale Pending' on the item for them. You can do this by going to the Manage Items page and selecting the item ID number and then choose Modify. You'll then scroll down and under Show Price As you'll change the status to Sale Pending. Be sure to click the Update button at the bottom of the page to save the change.

Scenario 6: A Customer Places An Order, But Does Not Send Payment

You'll want to change the item status from Sale Pending to 'For Sale At Regular Price' within your shop. In Manage Transactions, click on Manage next to Purchase Orders, and scroll down to the item. You'll then want to click Finalize Order. Then choose the appropriate reason for no sale having been made. Then choose whether you would like the item Removed, or Relisted in your shop. If you want an item to be available for sale in your shop once again, no fee is charged to relist the item when you Finalize the order.

Scenario 7: You're Taking Several Items From Your Ruby Lane Shop To A Show

In situations such as this, you'll want to place these items in your backroom so that they cannot be purchased via your shop at the same time. To move an item into your backroom, go to Manage Items and choose the item ID number, and click on Modify. Then scroll down to How Shall We Display It/Put This Item In Your, and choose Backroom. Remember that while an item is in your Backroom, no one else can see it. After the show, don't forget to place unsold items back into your shop from your backroom.

Scenario 8: I Noticed Or Was Notified Via Ruby Lane That An Item In My Shop Is In My Backroom. How Did It Get There?

When adding an item into your shop, under 'What Next?' be sure you check that you would like the item to remain in your shop. There are other options listed asking you if after a certain number of days you would like the item moved to your Backroom. Shops occasionally choose to place an item in their Backroom if it hasn't sold and they would like to assess whether to keep it in their shop, or remove it.

Scenario 9: I Was Notified Of An Overdue Transaction On An Item In My Shop

If an item remains as Sale Pending for more than 20 days, Ruby Lane will notify you via email every 20 days. While this item is listed as Sale Pending, it cannot be purchased by anyone. If you have confidence that you will receive funds for the item, then mark the item as sold by following the steps in Scenario 2.

If you are not sure you will receive funds for the item, you can choose to Finalize the order, mark the item as not sold and re-list it in your shop (at no extra charge to you). If the funds arrive later, you can then report a sale for this item at that time.